Cardinal Law used his most direct language yet in asking taking blame for shuffling abusers. He spoke at the Cathedral of the Holy Cross on Sunday in a continuation of a new pattern of addressing the Scandal head on: meeting with abuse victims, meeting with priests, and now public statements.
- Standing alone in green vestments at the top center of the altar steps, and reading from a prepared text running some 1,200 words, Law appeared to tear up when addressing the abuse victims – two dozen of whom stood outside, as they do nearly every Sunday, bearing signs urging him to resign. Some of the victims, alerted that Law might address the crisis that has besieged the Archdiocese of Boston for 10 months, stepped into the cathedral to hear his remarks. Most were not impressed – although a few on hand commended Law for taking “baby steps” in what they called a much-needed campaign to reach out to victims.
Are all the people standing outside victims? According to eyewitnesses, they are not, but include others as well.
- “I see this as a calculating person doing some aggressive damage control,” said Carmen L. Durso, a lawyer representing abuse plaintiffs. “Law has done nothing to take the weight off the victims via settlement. So this smacks of a PR onslaught in advance of a slew of ugly and damaging civil trials.”
So a lawyer who stands to make a lot of money from any settlement thinks any true apology would mean rolling over and opening up the archdiocese’s bank accounts. Hmm, typical. However sorry the cardinal is, he has a responsibility to us lay Catholics in the diocese to be a good steward of everything, including our property. He can’t just start liquidating the ardiocese’s assets and handing them out like candy.
- But Ruth Moore of Hull, a regular Cathedral protester, who also stepped inside to hear Law, called his words “too little too late.” … “He should have made a speech out here,” she said. “He still avoids us and sneaks out the back door.”
And get attacked? If you haven’t actually seen the protesters, they are anything but peaceful. They spew hateful and obscene remarks at just the parishioners entering churches. What do you think they would do if they saw the cardinal? He wouldn’t get two words out of his mouth in the face of the howling mob.
- As Law was departing, photocopies of his speech began circulating among the demonstrators. After reading it, Paul A. Baier of Wellesley, a founding member of VOTF, said Law “ought to be commended, I suppose, for finally stating some of these things outright.”
Oh, by the way, for the VOTF apologists who claim that VOTF has nothing to do with the protests outside the cathedral, note that a VOTF founding member was there.